Ahsan Iqbal distributs Electric Wheelchairs among University Students
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Ahsan Iqbal distributs Electric Wheelchairs among University Students

Electric Wheelchairs for University Students

Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives (MoPD&SI) Ahsan Iqbal has advised university students with special needs to sharpen their mental strength which he termed as the key to success. He was addressing a ceremony held at the HEC Secretariat on Wednesday in connection with the distribution of electric wheelchairs among students under the last phase of the Prime Minister’s Electric Wheelchair for University Students.

As many as 50 students received electric wheelchairs during the ceremony. In the first phase of the scheme, launched in 2017, 206 electric wheelchairs were provided to physically challenged university students, while 159 wheelchairs were handed over to students in the second phase.

Giving an example of the famous scientist, Stephen Hawking, Mr. Ahsan Iqbal said that an otherwise healthy person with no use of mental capabilities is worthless, while a physically challenged person who utilizes their mind can mark great achievements. “The future of Pakistan depends on making the right decisions on time, as any wrong decision can put the country’s future at stake. A country’s development gets haunted if there is lack of patience, perseverance as well as consistency of policies.”

In his remarks, Chairman HEC Dr Mukhtar Ahmed appreciated Mr Ahsan Iqbal for conceiving the idea of facilitating the challenged university students through the provision of electric wheelchairs in 2016-17 and taking practical measures for its execution. He said that HEC has collected the data of physically challenged university students particularly those with mobility issues, visual impairment, and hearing problems and, as the next stage of the scheme, these students will be provided with the gadgets and tools required. “HEC is committed to delivering in light of the Vision 2025 of the Government,” he asserted.

Some wheelchair recipients also expressed their views on the occasion and appreciated the Government and HEC for effectively implementing the Prime Minister’s Electric Wheelchair Scheme. The ceremony was also attended by Executive Director HEC Dr Shaista Sohail, Director General (Scholarships) HEC Aayesha Ikram and other senior officers of HEC.

Later, the Minister launched HEC’s Research for Innovation (RFI) portal. The Executive Director HEC briefed the Minister on the salient features of the RFI portal and how it will strengthen the linkage among academia, industry and Government to accelerate the process of commercializing academic research.

The Minister appreciated the objectives of the portal and hoped that it will strengthen the linkages among academia, industry and Government.

Related: IT sector is the key driver to increase digital exports: Ahsan Iqbal

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